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Diary of a Pleasant Day of Friends, Follicles, Fathers, and Fgood Deeds

Yesterday was one of those days where everything feels pleasant-to-fantastic, and I came home in the early evening with a feeling of bubbly inside. Nothing completely spectacular happened (I didn’t get offered my dream writing gig or have someone proclaim their undying love for me) but I’m happy.

Here’s my guide to passing a pleasant July 17th. Perhaps you could try it next year?

8am: Wake up.

9am: Finally get out of Skank Bed. Can you blame me? I was snug-as-a-bug-in-a-rug in there. (NB: Snuggliness entirely unrelated to Skankness.)

9:20am: Make a breakfast that could very easily pass as dessert (post might come); read old Vogue Entertaining and Travel magazine in ongoing battle to pare back recipe pile.

Greek Salad

This is clearly neither my breakfast nor dessert. ‘Tis a restaurant Greek Salad, from ages back, with lots of yummy feta for sharsies.

10:25am: Walk across road to local hair salon, armed with Positive Self Talk to brace said self against the hairdressers who, judging by my housemate’s experience, like to make you feel bad about yourself.

10:30am: Mmm. Hair shampoo/massage. Warm. Sleepy.

10:35-11:30am: Lovely friendly hairdresser (my proactive defence of calling my own hair awful, before she could, must have worked) trims hair and makes me look like first, a banshee, second, a member of KISS, and third, someone with straight hair. Pretty pretty straight hair straight pretty pretty! (Some of you may recognise this palindrome as my Facebook status)

S’all good. Just I can’t ever get it wet. But apart from that, s’all good.

12:30-1:30pm: Toe dressing and internet-borrowing at parents’ place.

1:30-3pm: Super Fun Times watching Battlestar Galactica with the Father. I may not be mathematically or scientifically-inclined, but at least we can have bonding moments over debating Cylons and which characters we like/think are believable.

3pm: Receive hilarious message from an American fellow who has a tendency to fail at regular communicatoriness. Having had only brief moments of contact in the past four months (you know a friendship is true when dry spells like that matter not a whit), I opened my email to see this as the opening sentence(s).

“You kind of look like an evil vampire from True Blood! Don’t be offended, she is pretty.”

Clearly, generic greetings are for the weak and unimaginative. Thanks L-man. Other girls might be taken aback by this, but you made me gleeful. True Blood is awesome. (Even if I’m not entirely sure which character you’re referring to. Is it Lorena? Because she really is quite evil.) I hope every future epistle from you comes with equally entertaining opening lines.


This is a misleading photo, too. It’s from the cafe mentioned below, but this Horchata and Blueberry Cheescake were partaken in on another visit with another friend. Said friend mightily liked the Horchata-made-from-tiger-nuts, and we both enjoyed the cheesecake.

3:30-5pm: Catch up with former uni friend, Mr. W, at my lovely local second-hand bookstore/cafe. While at first sitting with our drinks and treats in the corner of the bookstore plagued by Self Help, Cancer Survival, Relationship Advice, and Weight Loss Tomes seemed antithetical to a jovial atmosphere, we soon put paid to any negative osmosis and had, again, Super Fun Times. When I told him of my nerves regarding tutoring at uni in the coming weeks, he recommended I write my Honours mark on the whiteboard and wear my university medal around my neck. Methinks that would make the students predisposed to hate me rather than respect me. I’m leaning more towards cake-bribes.

My Long Black, and a pretty spoon!

5pm: Stop by the Official Masterchef Supermarket to buy some veggies and the item I had suddenly decided I needed-needed-needed, despite having no memory of eating it in the past: Blackstrap Molasses. And here’s my Good Deed for the day!

When I got to the checkout I, for reasons unbeknownst to myself, held up the molasses in the light and watched it swirl around. Suddenly, the older man in front of me asked what it was. Blackstrap molasses, I said. He looked intrigued, so I explained it’s an intensely-flavoured sweetener, more bitter than others of its ilk. The man asked where I’d found it, then darted out of the line when I told him. Sadly, he returned empty-handed; his search had been fruitless. Would you like mine? I offered. I can just pop back and get another for myself.

The man was so grateful that I now feel ashamed I don’t regurlarly distribute my shopping items amongst fellow shoppers. I could become, say, the Good Shopping Fairy. Or the Fairy Shopping Godmother.

If I were the Good Shopping Fairy, everyone would get flavoured peanut butter like this.

8pm: Only Debbie Downer of the day: I knocked a bowl onto the carpet from a height of no more than 45cm and it broke. The horrifying part is that the exact same thing happened to another bowl a few weeks ago (sorry, parents. That blue bowl I borrowed? Um. Yep).

Oh, and my favourite snack in the world right now is a toasted wholemeal English muffin drizzled with blackstrap molasses.

The End.

33 comments | Leave your own

  1. L-Izzle

    Several points I must raise after reading this entry:


    2. Your hair is pretty. Awwwwww 🙂

    3. Peanut butter is awesome, and THAT peanut butter breaks my heart with its omg-this-is-awesome-potential and its not-being-in-my-belly-reality 🙁

    4. I love that green tea cup.

    5. …i also love feta cheese.

    6. That bookstore really does have a slight excess of self-help-type books

    7. I’ve never had horchata and it makes me sad 🙁

    8. I’m terrified of hairdressers being mean to me. Thus i have not gone to one since i was 12. Thus my haircuts are courtesy of whatever scissors i find in my kitchen. Thus i am now even more scared of ever returning to a hairdresser.

    9. I break bowls/cups/plates often and in completely illogical ways, so i relate.

    thaaaaaaaaaat’s all!

  2. theresa

    I like your bird earrings!

    When I was in Canberra last year, I was taken to an awesome coffee shop, next door to a second-hand book shop. I was told it was a Canberra institution, or at least an ANU institution. Only I can’t remember what it was called, or the name of the suburb it was in. But, it was only 10 minutes or so from campus. Maybe the same place?

    And don’t be nervous about tutoring. Compared to the lecturer, you’re the cool, young, approachable one. Highlight that fact, and don’t pretend to know everything, and they will love you. And, if they stare out you with mouths shut when you ask a question, make them discuss it in small groups and then tell the class what they talked about. Works every time!

    1. L-Izzle

      ooh, i didn’t notice the birdy earrings! i definitely second this 😀

      and the cafe would’ve been tilley’s (a canberra institution, a music institution, and a lesbian institution…), at the lyneham shops, next to book lore. great bookstore!!! 🙂

  3. Kath Lockett

    Your hair is lovely but then again, so is your naturally curly hair, so you’re a winner either way.

    Now here -“I told him of my nerves regarding tutoring at uni in the coming weeks, he recommended I write my Honours mark on the whiteboard and wear my university medal around my neck. Methinks that would make the students predisposed to hate me rather than respect me. I’m leaning more towards cake-bribes.” DO BOTH!

  4. Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella

    What an eventful day you had! And now apart from your role as chocolate fairy you are now it seems the blackstrap molasses fairy!

  5. Agnes

    Wait, wait *hyperventilates* what was that about horchata made with tiger nuts?!?!?! I LOVE horchata – I drank litres of the stuff when we were in Spain years and years ago. You can get tiger nuts in Australia? And horchata that’s not the Mexican version?!


  6. Agnes

    Oh – and now that I’ve calmed down and gotten that out of my system – your hair looks awesome!

  7. Simply Life

    oh wow! that pb looks amazing!

  8. Johanna

    oh joyous day! I’d feel happy if I was served coffee in a beautiful cup like that and great fun at a bookshop cafe

    I come from a family of girls with curls who straighten and fear the rain. It is glamourous and fun for a change – esp when you want to look like an evil vampire, but hope you don’t abandon your gorgeous curls altogether!

  9. Chelsey

    your day sounds absoultely awesome!!! most importantly, the peanut butter 🙂

    i like your hair straight – but i love the curls too. you sure can rock them!!

  10. Louise

    Hannah, your hair looks great straight, but well of course since I have the worlds straightest hair, except for the annoying bits that poke the way you don’t want them to, I think your curly hair is divine. Why is it that everyone with straight hair wants curly hair and everyone with curly hair wants straight hair?

    Back in another life I used to make a fantastic muffin with blackstrap molasses. I think it was the bran and sour cream muffins. Sounds awful, but they were gooood. I wonder if I can ever find that recipe again? Oh, oh, just got Macarthur Park in my head. How to get it out? How? I would never leave the cake out in the rain, for this exact reason.

    Good luck with the tutoring. It’s always much more stressful before it starts, than after.

    1. whisperinggums

      Not everyone … I have curly hair and am perfectly happy with it. Wash, tousle and I’m done!

  11. Tammy McLeod

    Call me sheltered but I had no idea that you would be drinking horchata in Australia. Yes, that sounds like a wonderful day. I could use a wonderful day right now.

  12. Laura @ Hungry and Frozen

    Wear the medal!

    I’ve never, ever had blackstrap mollasses, I think there’s something about the name that sounds a bit punishment-y but I do trust your tastes. Good on you for doing the nice thing and handing it over…he’ll remember that for years to come (well, you’d hope, right?)

    Much as I’m a curls person most of the time, your hair looks really nice!

  13. thehungryscholar

    I love this post. You are beautiful, also.

    That coffee cup and saucer (the green and pink one) is pretty!

  14. croquecamille

    That does sound like a lovely day. I love getting a pretty haircut, but it never seems to stay the same after leaving the salon! But sometimes it still looks good the next day, and that’s how you know you’ve found a really good hairdresser.

  15. Lisa (bakebikeblog)

    What a perfect day!!!!! And I too LOVE Battlestar Gallactica!! It is about the ONLY sci fi that I will watch!!

  16. Vaala ◪

    I like molasses. It’s good on my porridge (and I found myself selling it to my flatmate the other day and telling her how awesome it is).

    Ooo, straight hair! My hair was straightened once (well, several times…while I was a hair model for some girl at hairdressing school). People didn’t recognise me from behind and got confused from the front. So did I (and my hair isn’t even super curly…it was quite frightening how long it was though).

    All good breakfasts are either like an awesome dessert or a delicious lunch/dinner. Or is that just me? That’s not saying I don’t absolutely love muesli and porridge and all that but still…

  17. Lauren

    Funny, I curled my hair every day this week! I suppose it makes sense why we all want the hair we don’t have, and wonder why the other side doesn’t understand *they’ve* got the better deal. Naturally curly hair can be frizzy, but luxuriously shiny and thick when straightened. My hair is limp and boring when straight, so gains some personality with curls. (Still, I envy every girl with curly hair!)

    And as for Mr. True Blood, correct, it was Lorena. He told me about it yesterday. I have never watched the show, but from his explanation, she does seem very evil indeed.

  18. Hannah

    L-Izzle: I guess we’ll have to make our planned bookstore rendezvous a reality and get you some horchata then! Also, stop being a pansy and go to the hairdressers. Why should you care what they think/say? Plus, I don’t trust you with scissors. I can’t help feeling you’ll pick them up then get distracted by camembert and poke yourself in the eye.

    Theresa: Squee! Thank you for noticing! I bought the earrings at Montpelier (President Madison’s place) in 2008 and only just re-found them after thinking I must have left them at UVA 🙂 Yes, as Lizzi said, you’re thinking of Tilley’s. Last year a group of friends and I used to to Sunday brunch + craft there P.S. Thank you for the advice! So appreciated.

    Kath: Oh, thank you! Seeing as one of my tutorials is at 5pm straight after the 2-hour lecture… I think you’re right!

    Lorraine: And to think, I wasn’t ever a little girl obsessed with fairies! 😉

    Agnes: You just hurt me with your sword-like words of doom. “So there s a reason to visit Canberra”?! WHAT ABOUT YOUR BFF WITH PRETTY HAIR? (:P) But apart from that – come visit and we will make the 1-minute walk from my place to get you your beloved tiger-nuts horchata!

    Simply Life: Well, it’s from your country!

    Johanna: At least you understand! 🙂 Don’t worry, I lack the patience and skill to straighten my hair on a regular basis. However, the vampire comment was in regards to my facebook photo (I think?!), in which I had curly hair. I think it’s the photo from one of my fiddler on the roof posts, actually!

  19. Hannah

    Chelsey: You’ll have to eat that peanut butter for the both of us now! I’d finished mine, and we can’t get it in Australia 🙁 Also, thank you *blushes*

    Louise: Teehee, I’ve had this conversation with so many people! I still maintain that naturally straight hair is better if only because you can roll out of bed in the morning, run a comb through it and be DONE. If I do that, I end up looking like Medusa. (Which is almost an evil vampire, come to think of it.) Also, if you find that muffin recipe, please forward it to me! I’m in love with molasses right now. And yes – the nerves before are scary!

    Tammy: Oh, I hope you get a nice day soon! At least you have warmth where you are – we’re still in winter, ugh. This is the first time I’ve come across Horchata, too. Guess Australia has more than meets the eye 😉

    Laura: For all my molasses love, I’d still probably stick with real maple syrup if it didn’t break the bank 😉 But I like how molasses isn’t too sweet… there’s almost something mineral-y about it?! Maybe I should make the medal my blog header 😀

    The Hungry Scholar: Thank you! Particularly as I don’t really like this photo of me, but I like the hair 😀

    Camille: Wise words indeed 🙂 I think I actually like the hair best a day after it’s been straightened, because some of the curliness starts to come back and gives it a bit of body, or something.

    Lisa: Me too, although I absolutely would recommend Serenity too – it’s by Joss Whedon, and it’s fantastic!

    Vaala: My porridges are often hugely dessert-y, what with the maple syrup and peanut butter and dark chocolate dotted on top! Actually, just today the lecturer I’m tutoring for walked past me without recognising me 😀 You were a hair model? Ooh-la-la!

    Lauren: You curled your hair every day? Wow, that’s a level of dedication I don’t think I’m up to 😉 It’s only in recent years that I’ve come to appreciate my curly hair – I used to hate it. But still, this straight hair business is so eaaaaaaasy and carefree. Loving it!


    ur such a cutie!!!

    haha ‘stank’ bed, oh myyy made me laugh!

    i love that spoon!! and i love that peanut butter!! <3

  21. Fiona

    cute hair!

  22. L-Engineer

    But did you steal my cooking salt, or have I just misplaced it?

  23. Agnes

    Cough… yes, of course what I meant to say was: There’s two reasons to visit Canberra?!

  24. whisperinggums

    Well I suppose that means we are back to having an even number again. We’ll forget they’re ever were 6 (and after all, I had already forgotten given one had been broken and one stolen!)

  25. Amber Shea @Almost Vegan

    You look beeee-yoo-tiful! So does that PB&Co. jar, mmmyeah.

    Oh my god. Oh my god, did you say that’s a blueberry and HORCHATA cheesecake?!? Oh. My. god.

  26. Louise

    I found it! And online even. I know what I’m going to be doing this weekend. I haven’t made them in a long time, but I remember them being fabulous. Anything that tempers bran with sour cream has to be good doesn’t it?

  27. Louise

    I found it! And online even. I know what I’m going to be doing this weekend. I haven’t made them in a long time, but I remember them being fabulous. Anything that tempers bran with sour cream has to be good doesn’t it?

  28. Conor @ HoldtheBeef

    Oooooooh I love your earrings too! I have a few pairs of birdy ones but those are lovely lovely! I think if I had another life to live I’d be an ornithologist.

    Blackstrap molasses apparently has all sorts of health benefits, if you start researching it. Maybe it has toe curative properties? Please?

    You know what you have to do though, don’t you… make a backstrap dish with blackstrap molasses. Yes.

  29. Hannah

    Kelsey: Thank you! And I’m glad it gave you a laugh – the bed has to be good for something! I’m so envious of you because you live in the country where you can get that peanut butter easily 🙁

    Fiona: Thank you!

    L.Engineer: Whoops! I didn’t realise you actually use that for cooking (I’ve always used the salt by the stove). It’s in the bathroom, being used for the toe-soaking (yum yum!)

    Agnes: That’s better.

    Whisperinggums: That’s what the housemate and I figured. Better four than five, because with five you know something’s wrong, but four could easily have been a set of four. However, I’d rather you had that set of four and I had an unbroken fifth one… 😛

    Amber: Thank you! Particularly ’cause I feel a ambivalent about that photo myself! And whoops – editing fail. It’s a blueberry cheesecake (behind) and a horchata drink (in front). But a horchata cheesecake would be amazing!

    Louise: Thanks! Although sour cream can tend to be a cranky one for my lactose-hating tummy… I do make a damn good coconut sour cream cake, though!

    Conor: Oooh, what if that were your superhero identity? PhD by day, Bird-Devotee by night, it’s the Telepathic Learned (pronounced learn-ED) Ornithologist (telepathic because you have to have a superpower).
    Yes, I know! I feel all virtuous because it’s high in calcium, and that’s something I have to have super high levels of. And iron, I think? Toe curative we’ll have to see. Blackstrap backstrap – it could definitely work, perhaps in a marinade with soy and ginger. Except backstrap is way out of my budget right now!

  30. Monique@She's Going The Distance

    Those drinks look divine!! And also yay hair!! I like it 🙂 I just got mine cut today. Going to the hairdresser is so fun. I like to fall asleep when I’m getting my little hair wash/massage.

    Also, I can NEVER EVER recreate what they do to my hair. It stinks. 🙁 Well, not my hair. It usually smells pretty good. The situation stinks haha.

  31. Hannah

    Monique: I agree, the situation stinks – I am such a klutz when it comes to doing my own hair! 😛